The families listed on this page have made it to “the end of the rainbow”.
Your sponsorship is most critical now, as their final agency, country, and travel fees are coming due. Your help will make such a huge difference!
The families listed on this page have made it to “the end of the rainbow”.
Your sponsorship is most critical now, as their final agency, country, and travel fees are coming due. Your help will make such a huge difference!
When Robert and I realized God was calling us to step out in faith to adopt, He had already provided her for us. She was 15yrs old at the time, an advocate was trying to find her a family she so desperately wanted. By this time He had already placed her photo, and story in our path. Once we realized that God had chosen US to be the family she wanted and needed. Surprised, and kinda in shock you might say. However we will do anything our Father wants us to do. Although unprepared financially, we said YES God, however you are fully aware of our finances, but you know the end from the beginning, and are able to do all we can ask or even imagine!
Here’s a little back story on us. We have 6 adult children, and 5 grandchildren from previous marriages. We are in our 50’s, bought land, and Robert is building us a house in the country. This is where we thought our lives were headed. Savings depleted from building the house little by little without a loan. We do not want a mortgage. Adoption wasn’t a part of this “plan”, well not ours! Even though our world has flip flopped God is so good to us! There’s millions of others better fit to adopt, but He chose US for HER.
He is amazing, and yet has a sense of humor. She had 1 month until her 16th birthday. What?! Yes, we had to act quickly. No time to save money, look into resources etc… Praying, we made it! Now we immediately started fundraising! I started Hot Cocoa bombs making/selling them, started a gofundme, a tshirt and Gobena coffee immediately, and still continue them regularly. Currently, I have a Facebook fundraising group: Moving Mountains fundraising that brings a steady flow in, however small amounts. Gobena coffee has never stopped, and a puzzle going on now. We have recently had Connected Hearts Ministry join our fundraising efforts with a crowd fund, and adoption board. These have been the most successful thus far. We currently have $9802 in our account with them.
How would financial assistance help us? It will make us a family. It will give her love unending, unconditional, and opportunities she otherwise wouldn’t have. A bigger question: What if we were not to get assistance needed? The thought makes me ill, I have to believe God would not let us be so attached to her, and she to us. The bond we have even without touch, hugs, or that one on one contact gives you, its absolutely incredible. To love a child you’ve never met before, yet you’d lay your life down for her.
7/29/2021 — DOSSIER COMPLETE
Brian and Stephanie have grown their family in nearly every possible way: biology, step parenting, foster care and international adoption. Nine of their children are “permanent members” but a handful of extras call them mom and dad from their years as foster parents, and they have even recently added the title of “bonus grandparents” to their names.
Their kids range from 21 to 2, college students to babies, the youngest members arriving via international adoption and both rocking their extra chromosomes and both the unanimous sibling favorites.
When adopting the littlest member, Zeke, Brian and Stephanie decided at the last moment to add a second son while the world was on pause due to the pandemic. Things unexpectedly opened up again, and due to their son’s medical needs they were advised to go ahead and get him home for the medical attention he needs and return. They had already amended their home study, agency documents and USCIS approval so they are ready to head back as soon as Zeke is settled in his new family!
The McFarland-Higgins family will be adopting a third child with down syndrome, and with their paperwork ready to go, will be able to move quickly when it is time. Stephanie opened a small business in 2019 to fund the family’s adoptions and the family plans to expand their shop to employ adults with intellectual disabilities in the future. You can visit them at www.longertableapothecary.com
7/22/2021 — AWAITING USCIS APPROVAL
Hi! We are Steven and Anna, and we have four amazing kids! We got married in 2010 and immediately started talking about having a family. We knew that we wanted adoption or foster care to be part of our story, but there is no way we could have envisioned how God would bring us all together!
In 2014, after attempting to do foster care locally and having doors closed, we faced the heartbreaking reality of infertility. We decided to lean back into the idea of adopting, and began working with our agency to pursue domestic infant adoption. While in the homestudy process, we saw our son Eddie listed in an advocacy post. We immediately contacted our agency and couldn’t believe it when they said we met all of the criteria to be matched with him! We were overjoyed. Eddie is now eight years old, and has been home from Bulgaria since Fall 2015. He loves music and the outdoors with a passion!
After bringing Eddie home, we knew that our family was not complete. We also saw how quickly his health and overall development improved after leaving the orphanage, and we felt that we should act quickly. To many, it seemed overzealous to start the process again when Eddie had only been home for a few months, but we knew that if there was a little girl out there in a crib somewhere, it wasn’t too soon for her. We began the process to adopt again from Bulgaria, and were still in our homestudy phase when another Reece’s Rainbow mom contacted me to share Rosa’s photo and advocacy profile. We were immediately drawn to her! Rosa came home in late 2016. She is eight years old and loves video chatting with grandparents, playing with siblings, family bike rides, and reading books together.
Shortly after Rosa came home, we saw Victor’s photograph. We immediately knew that his needs were urgent and that it was pressing for him to get out of orphanage care. After just a few weeks, we inquired with our agency about the feasibility of starting the adoption process for the third time in two years. His adoption was completed in less than a calendar year, and he came home right before Christmas in 2017. Victor has a smile that lights up the whole room. He loves vestibular stimulation, his fiber optic lamp, and riding in the bike trailer. We are so thankful that he was able to come home to our family.
In 2019 we got an incredible gift of new life! Karyn, our biological child, was born in the Fall. It has been so wonderful to watch her grow up with such diverse family members and how much she loves them all. One of Karyn’s first consistent words was “Vic!” and she chirps his name constantly! “Vic! Vic!” Victor, who doesn’t always like a lot of touch, loves her and will even smile a little as he hears her running towards him. She has inspired Eddie to play more and has given Rosa a chance to nurture to her heart’s content. Karyn is full of moxie!
In late 2020, we realized that we had room in our hearts and home for another kiddo. As we contemplated adopting again, Anna saw an advocacy post about a specific kiddo that sent the family in the direction of Latin America. We are so thrilled to have the chance to adopt again and bring home a beloved sister and treasured daughter. Children belong in forever families, and we can’t wait to meet our little girl!
Update: Sadly, in July 2021, Victor became critically ill and did not survive his illness. While our family is deeply saddened, we are wholeheartedly committed to continuing the adoption process. We are so grateful for Victor’s time in our family and that Victor lived and died with dignity in the arms of a loving family. We are working with our agency and the central authority in our proposed child’s country to update needed dossier documents with a goal of receiving our referral in Spring 2021.
The Parrish family has met their $4,000 matching grant!!
10/20/2021 — DOSSIER UPDATE in PROCESS
Sara and Shandon have been married for 17 years. Together they have 4 biological children. Aged 25, 22, 13 and 2. Shandon is a truck driver and Sara a stay at home mom. Sara had always known that she wanted adoption to be a part of her future since she was young. Her and Shandon had discussed it many times through the years, but had never felt it was the “right time”. The right time came for them in the spring of 2020 when began their adoption journey..
While scrolling through facebook posts Sara had come across a post sharing a story of a child adopted out of an orphanage, entitled “What love can do”. After reading through the post, she found Reece’s Rainbow and began reading through the pages of children in need of a family. Night after night she would go on an see all the little faces, and it made her heart ache. She had not really thought of international adoption before, however, she felt like this was where she belonged and that god had brought her here for a reason.
Her first commitment was made that summer, when she found a little boy she knew was meant to be her son. Sara and Shandon discussed the process and decided they were 100% ready to jump in and get this little one home.
A few weeks went by and she came across another post on facebook shared by Keshia Melton, called “see me Saturday”. And that is when she saw her daughter. She had seen the bio of this little one before, and had gone back to it so many times, it seemed to keep popping up almost daily, reminding her that she was still there, and waiting. She could not get this little girl off of her mind, and there came the second commitment.
Anyone who knows Sara and Shandon know that they are givers, it is not in their nature to ask for help. But the cost of international adoption is expensive, and something that they will need help with. They have had multiple yard sales, can drives, Sara makes ornaments, and Shandon has been selling paintings. They understand that times are tough for everyone right now, but are asking if you can donate to help bring these kiddos home they would appreciate it, any amount helps. If you can not donate monetarily, they ask that you share their story. They believe strongly in the power of prayer, so they ask that you join them in prayer that these 2 little ones are safe and protected until they can make it to them.
9/17/2021 — DOSSIER COMPLETE & IN COUNTRY
Gary and Denise became members of the Reece’s Rainbow Family in 2006. First by advocating and supporting International Adoption for Ukraine and children in Eastern Europe. After adopting both Makayla and Patrick in 2000 and 2002 they wanted to return to adopt but decided on adopting from Bulgaria Chrissie 2009, then Jake and Gennie in 2011 from Bulgaria. Sadly Gennie died of complication of organ failure from her Cystic Fibrois shortly after arriving in the US. Little Jake also suffers from Cystic Fibrosis. But the Davis Family devotes their love and time to caring to ensure Jake gets the very best medical care. After Gennie’s death the Davis family hearts ached. But also the Davis family heart was for another little girl so their hearts were led to Ukraine and adopted not one but two little girls Penelope and Katya. As time quickly passed by read of a little girl Sophia who needed major ortho care and a young man they named Grayson who received a donor kidney. These two children needed out quickly to survive and without medical care Grayson would have died. And Sophia now can run and dance like other children.
Advocating for Reece’s Rainbow did not end after their adoption of Grayson and Sophia in 2019. Denise followed each child as they were listed and daily prayed each found a home. Speaking to many families through her blog she shared her journey with the assistance of Reece’s Rainbow. Many times there would be certain children or families who touched Denise’s heart. So she helped by donating and advocating to families adopting. This pass year there was a particular little girl with two healthy sisters. Her name on Reece’s Rainbow but not her given name was sitting on a couch watching her sisters play. This particular video Denise watched over and over. Each night the girls were in Denise’s prayers. Soon the entire family prayed for this little girl. She sat in an old blue pair of pajamas as her healthy sister dressed in party dresses. Both playing with dolls and pushing doll strollers. Watching a video of a small girl who so many people viewed yet never inquired or cared. As months passed she sat once again on the same couch but this time alone. Her precious beautiful healthy sisters were chosen for adoption. Makes one ask themselves why not little Cassandra also. Make children like Cassandra are over looked. Her clothes still old and mismatched. Could they have placed a pretty dress on her? Add on a big beautiful bow? Made you wonder if she knew her sisters were not coming back. Knowing this one little girl once she is 4 or 5 wll be moved to an older child’s orphanage or even worse an adult institutional setting. Yes there are thousands of orphans in the world but not one child out of the thousands chose to be an orphan. Not sure if many of you have visited an orphanage. The Davis family and their adopted children can tell you this is not a home nor a family. Children need a Father a Mother, sisters and brothers. And maybe a few cats or a dog to snuggle with and play ball with.
No child as they grow up wonder why they were not in a family. Many times families do not adopt because they are unsure or afraid.. Adopting a child involves a ton of paperwork, many tears, many prayers and yes one adoption can cost over $34,000. Without prayers, love an support of others through donation can not be possible. Please in your heart Take that Leap. The Davis Family prays that the funds they need are provided as needed during their adoption. Every dollar goes to saving a little girl or boy sitting on a couch alone or laying in a bed.
8/25/2021 — DOSSIER COMPLETE & EN ROUTE
We are James and Kim Shepard. We are two passionate, goofy, and adventurous cat parents who are seeking to grow our awesome family through international adoption. We both work for the same agent as community-based therapists for individuals with disabilities and mental health dual diagnoses. We both have a huge heart for individuals with disabilities and are fervent advocates for acceptance and inclusion, which started when we were young and grew into our professional lives. We seek to continue this mission through our personal family lives and feel a huge calling to establish a home where children with disabilities are given the highest quality of life and the love that they deserve. This mission has really grown and developed as God called us towards international adoption of a child with Down Syndrome in 2021, while we were looking through all the wonderful children in need of loving homes on the Reece’s Rainbow website. We recently purchased a home in Indiana, where we care for our four cats and bearded dragon, explore our love of foods from all different cultures in our bright orange kitchen, and develop James’s growing photography business. We are so excited to welcome our future child into our wonderful and exciting lives.
9/22/2021 — USCIS APPROVED
Meet the Jagge family from Texas – Theron, Kelci, Emma (10) and Hudson (2)! In 2020, Kelci came across an Instagram video that was posted by a Reece’s Rainbow family. Seeing how this family had drastically changed a life, the Jagges were drawn to do research on special needs orphans around the world. Reece’s Rainbow and other sources opened their eyes to the devastating reality that many of these precious children will likely never know the love of a family. The Jagge family had recently been considering becoming foster parents but they quickly realized that international adoption was the path that God had placed before them.
If you had met Theron and Kelci before 2020, you would probably be surprised to hear this. They were focused on themselves and their goals of a bigger house, full bank accounts and career advancement. Foster care and adoption were acts that they admired but had not considered for their family.
“But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—” Ephesians 2:4-5
God, in his merciful kindness, completely changed both of their hearts around the same time and saved them from a path of destruction. With that change of heart came a change of priorities and a desire to share the love of Christ with others. The specific burden of adoption has grown substantially since the fall of 2020 and God has opened doors indicating to them that it was time to act on these desires.
Theron and Kelci long to grow their family through international adoption, hopefully the first of several. Emma is excited about a new sibling and they are sure that Hudson will be thrilled also, when he is old enough to understand.
The Jagges have a specific boy that they are hoping to adopt but if he becomes unavailable, they know that God has already chosen a specific child who they cannot wait to meet!
9/11/2021 — DOSSIER COMPLETE
Hi! My name is Holly and I would like to introduce you to a crazy family… Mine.
I have an 11 year old son named Jakob and for a while it was he and I against the world. Then in 2014 Jake and I married Ronnie. He tripped me in Walmart, and I fell for him. Literally. Together the 3 of us built a beautiful little family. In 2015 we added Genesis to our family, and in 2017 God gave us our two boys.
We had been introduced to Reece’s Rainbow and international special needs adoption a year-ish before when our church participated in a fundraiser to help a local family to bring home a waiting child from Reece’s Rainbow. Around the same time another Reece’s Rainbow child had gone viral for their amazing transformation since being brought home. I would scroll through the photo’s of the children, share the fundraisers for the families, and pray for all. I never thought we would be one of the families! But then it happened. One day I was scrolling through the photos and I saw a face. I felt it in my whole being that she was part of our family and we jumped in heart first!
We had no idea what we were doing, and there were many hiccups along the way! We kept pushing forward though. Then in April 2018 we found out that the child we absolutely loved had passed away. My heart was shattered. Since we were in an incredible custody battle for the two boys we decided not to continue with the adoption at that time. We needed to focus on keeping the boys safe.
Then in October 2019 it happened again. I was scrolling through Reece’s Rainbow’s Facebook page and I saw a little boy who looked so much like my 4 year old that my heart just stopped. We had just purchased our new home days before. We were in a new state, new house, starting a new chapter of our lives. I showed his picture to Ronnie expecting that he was going to talk some sense into me. Instead he tells me “we actually have room for two”. So much for being talked off the ledge!
Ronnie works for the public school system with developmentally disabled children. I work for a nonprofit organization as a Direct Support Professional in residential group homes. We are NOT wealthy people by any means. But what we lack in dollars we make up for with love. God has brought us to this, and I know he will provide for us to be able to bring our children home.
Please keep our family in your prayers as we work endless hours of overtime, fundraise, and try to navigate the international adoption process.
9/21/2021 — DOSSIER SUBMITTED
Patrick and Lindsey have devoted their lives to changing the lives of kids from all different backgrounds and abilities. They always knew they would adopt internationally, but it wasn’t until 2020 when God said to step out in faith and they decided to push forward. After fostering for over 10 years, they decided to pursue their dreams of adopting a true orphan and giving them a forever home. They first applied for a little girl seen on Reece’s Rainbow, but during the home study process another family committed to her. They prayed and God answered saying, “Do not be discouraged now there is not only one orphan who found a home, but now there will be two.” They continued the home study process and began to pray about which children God had for them. Being a registered nurse and having one daughter with cerebral palsy and another with autism they knew special needs were definitely open. As soon as they read the statistics and the outcome likely for most children with Down syndrome, they knew that was where God was leading them. They can’t wait to add another little girl to their family and show God’s great love to those around them through this great testimony and prove love really doesn’t count chromosomes.
4/1/2021 — USCIS APPROVED
When I was in college in 1996, I had the opportunity to travel to Haiti on a service learning trip. It was there I met the most precious child, a social orphan, like so many in the world. And she planted a seed that took years to spout. In 2010, I traveled with family to Bangladesh to visit children we sponsored at an orphanage. There I realized that love could fully and completely extend beyond the boundaries of traditional views of parent and child. It was a profound time of learning about family structure.
I have three incredible children conceived through IVF; my sweet sons are Joshua, Johnathan and Gabriel. It was a time that l learned to lean fully rely on God. It taught me that hard things happen and still I can trust in Him! As I prayed for the children of my womb, I have also prayed for this little boy of my heart. I know he meant to feel loved and belong with us; he’s been wanted and longed for, for many years!
It is not in my nature to seek assistance however, this is a time, I do ask. The cost of international adoption is expensive ($35,000). I would love for you to partner with us to bring our sweet child home. Also, I believe strongly in the power of prayer and welcome prayers for ease of process, for our family as we prepare here but specially to keep our little one safe and protected till home with us.
4/20/2021 — DOSSIER SUBMITTED
We are the Woertman family and we are having so much fun with our children that we decided we needed one more. We are hoping to adopt a little girl with Down Syndrome. We live in the great state of North Carolina. We have 5 adult children, 5 school aged children and four Grandchildren.
Fred just finished up his 25th year of teaching middle school. He is often called the “kid whisperer.” He really understands middle schoolers. Between having kids, Candy taught 13 years, but has now put her teaching career on hold while her kids are little. She is currently a Teacher’s Assistant at the elementary school that all five little ones attend.
We are excited to be on this adoption journey one more time. We are also hoping to be matched with the little girl that Candy has had on her heart for almost two years.
8/25/2021 — APPROVED & AWAITING TRAVEL
Amy & Kyle are so excited to welcome their first child into their lives through adoption! When they first began dating it was clear that they both wanted children and that they both had dreamed of growing their family through adoption. For Christmas one year Kyle gave Amy a card with appointments scheduled at multiple adoption information sessions and so began their journey to beginning their family!
After lots and lots of research and exploration of many many countries, they decided to adopt from South Korea where Kyle’s grandmother and mother were born. They love the idea of their child growing up around people who share their heritage and will help to preserve some of their culture.
Kyle has his master’s degree in international public health and now serves his local community empowering residents to make healthier lifestyle and food choices. Amy has her BA in Social Science with a concentration in Anthropology. She found her passion in photography and loves documenting weddings of the various cultures in California. Kyle and Amy both have a love of the world and they look forward to exposing their child to lots of travel both to South Korea and beyond while also focusing on loving our local community and bettering the world both near and far.
They have recently completed their home study and are approved to adopt a single child or twins and are open to special needs. Cardiac special needs are particularly close to their heart since Amy was diagnosed with an Arrythmia that was operated on shortly after they were married. That led them to discovering an amazing cardiac care team at Stanford hospital (who already know about and are so excited for the adoption) that would be a great resource for any heart related special needs their child may have.
2021 Update: The last 2 years have brought many changes in our adoption journey. After our dossier was sent to Korea we were matched about 6 weeks later with a beautiful baby girl who we had the honor of calling our daughter for several months until her mother was able to parent. We found out she would be going home the night before Christmas Eve in 2019 which was a time of heartbreak for us but also one of celebration knowing what a good thing it was for her and her mother to be together. We decided to continue forward and wait to be matched again when everything was finalized.
That came at a particularly rough time as COVID was hitting the world and our agency announced they would not be renewing accreditation and that we’d have to find another agency to transfer to. The wait to be matched took much longer than our first wait but soon we’d realize every moment was beyond worth it.
On May 17th, 2021, we got the call our hearts had been longing for, we’d been matched again with a precious 8-month-old little girl in South Korea! While we were still on the phone hearing the details, her photo popped into our inbox and I began to cry immediately. She was absolutely amazing and such a dream come true. Our strong girl had overcome big obstacles in her short life. Even with all she had been through, she was growing healthy, bright, and beautiful just as all who knew her had wished for her future, according to her file. She is already so beloved by us, our whole family and community. We gave her the name Evelyn in addition to her beautiful Korean name, which means ‘wished for child’ and we can’t think of a more appropriate description, she is truly a long-awaited wish come true. Since then we have been EP submitted, approved, and are now awaiting a court date.
9/17/2021 — AWAITING COURT
Mollie doesn’t remember the exact moment when adoption was put on her heart and in her mind. But, she does remember it was all consuming. She tried to get away from it. But, she couldn’t. It was there and it wouldn’t go away. It was 2015. By early 2016 she finally worked up the nerve to bring it up to her husband, Bryan. It’s not that they didn’t talk often, or that they kept secrets. It’s that she thought he would think that she was crazy! You see… they had seven biological children and they thought they were done. Their family felt complete.
Earlier that year their youngest, at seven years old, had had open heart surgery. She had recovered and was doing great. Their oldest son was engaged to be married. Life was good. But, that nagging adoption thing wouldn’t go away. So she told him. And, the miracle of it all was that he had been thinking about it, too.
In April 2017, one month after their first grandchild was born, they came home with not one, but two sons from China. They were their pride and joy! But life wasn’t ever going to be the same. It was overwhelming! But, one day at a time, one sleepless night at a time, they got through it.
They went into adoption with their eyes wide open, or so they thought. In the end both boys, their sons, had needs that had been undiscovered. The words deaf and autism, and global delays were added to their family. But guess what? These were their children, the ones they fell in love with before they had ever met them! They held on because God knew what they needed. They needed to depend upon him totally. Three years later their adopted sons are thriving and their biological children have learned so much about love and the privilege to know people with special needs.
In 2020 that call to adopt has become strong in their family again. This time they have felt called to consider adopting a little girl with that beautiful extra chromosome. They want to add a child with Down syndrome to their family. And, once again it’s the same, that all consuming desire is there to give a child a family. Would you please pray God will make a way?
10/2/2020 — DOSSIER SUBMITTED; OFFICIALLY MATCHED
Twenty years ago, Elijah and Tiffany Jackson fell in love. Two years later, they got married and built a home on the century-old family farm. They started a family, having two wonderful little boys fairly close together. Five years later they were blessed with a little girl with Down syndrome, and oh, how her brothers loved her!! It didn’t take any of them very long to realize Down syndrome was not something to fear or avoid, but something to celebrate and cherish! The thought had come to them while their little girl was still a baby that they should think about adopting a child with Down syndrome, so they checked Reece’s Rainbow here and there, but didn’t know how to take the first steps of such a big journey! So, for a time, the idea was forgotten. 10 years later, Heavenly Father made it very obvious that it was still in His plan for the Jackson’s to add to their family through adoption! With the help of a good friend, they got right to work. They are so excited and ready to have little sister in their home and to be in their family forever!
10/13/2021 — TA RECEIVED in JANUARY 2020; AWAITING TRAVEL
Matching Grant through RODS Racing has been met!
Meet the Effhauser Family! Matthew and Sarah live with their five children on a little farm in rural Minnesota along with their two dogs, two barn cats and too many chickens to count. They are high school sweethearts and started their family soon after being married; their children now range from 13 to 2.
A few years into marriage, their eyes were opened to children with special needs living in orphanages around the world. They began supporting families in process and donating to life-saving surgeries for little ones. Soon they realized that maybe they were being called to adoption, someday. The conversations and prayers around adoption began and as they added more children to their family, worked their way through job changes and renovated their 1913 farmhouse, they kept gently hearing the Lord say “not yet”, even when their hearts wished He would say yes.
Trusting in His timing and discerning that the time to adopt was hopefully nearing, Sarah resigned from her teaching position to stay home with their youngest children in preparation to be home with their adopted child someday as well. The Effhauser family participated in the Miracle of Adoption Christmas Campaign and were thrilled to share a sweet boy with the world and the work of Reece’s Rainbow. Maybe advocacy was only what they were called to do?
Over the years, the couple had shared many pictures of waiting children with one another until one summer day they saw the face of a young boy, just a few months younger than the baby of their family and they knew, now was the time! The entire family can’t wait for their little brother to be home!
9/9/2021 — USCIS APPROVED; AWAITING TRAVEL DATES
Another Journey!! Welcome to our new addition, our 3rd child, Ethan Paul.
William and Catrina are the parents of two, 7 and 8 years old. William and Catrina know each other for long time and met again in 2006. They went out on date in 2006 and marriage in 2008! They used live in New Jersey but moved to Wilmington Delaware. Their children are from China, and Deaf like their parents! Ethan Paul is Deaf also. They’re excited to welcome a little boy who has no family of his own. God gave them blessings to adopt another child, and to give their children best life and loving by the family and support!
7/29/2020 — AWAITING LOA
Susan knew that one day she would build her family through adoption after watching a 20/20 episode on an orphanage in Romania back when was she was 11 years old. Susan grew up with a sister that is 13 years older than her and always longed to have a large family. Grant was raised in a larger family and knew that he wanted a large family of his own. Susan shared her passion for adoption when she first started dating Grant. When Grant and Susan got married they came into the relationship with two biological children each making them a blended family.
They have now been through the international adoption process twice. Their first adoption was their son Soo Min who was adopted from South Korea in 2008 when he was 3 ½ years old. Soo Min has a form of primordial dwarfism, failure to thrive, and PDA. He is doing amazingly well, thriving, and bringing our family so much joy. Grant and Susan started their last adoption in 2014 with hopes to bring home their daughter, Eden, from Ghana. They traveled there, had her in their care for two weeks and even passed court. What they did not know was that everything was falsified information and she was never legally adoptable. To say they were all heartbroken was an understatement. One month after losing Eden, Susan became pregnant with their son Hudson. It is amazing the way God works.
This decision to adopt again wasn’t taken lightly. The decision this time around had many things to consider and time needing to heal from the failed adoption in 2015. Knowing and understanding the permanence of adoption is why the last time was so painful: Eden is still somewhat part of the family, and the reason the Lee children always say there’s eight children in the family. The Lee family started to pray about adoption again and researched programs that have a long history of success. This is what led them to Asia this time. Susan would lay in bed for hours scrolling through Reese’s rainbow looking at children waiting to be adopted. When Susan saw Alisa, she knew she was her daughter. She went back and forth between many kids and something was calling the Lee family to Alisa. They have a current Home-Study, have submitted their I-800A, and are compiling their dossier paperwork.
9/28/2020 — AWAITING LOA
Jacob and Jacqueline met in 2000 at a Spirituality Retreat in the Pocono’s. They had a traditional courtship and wrote letters for the first many months of dating. They were both clear that they wanted to have a family someday. Jacqueline was called to work with adults with developmental delays which she has been doing for over 23 years. Jacob is both an artist and an Activities Coordinator for an agency supporting adults with developmental delays.
Once it was clear that they were ready to start a family, Jacqueline knew in her heart that she was meant to be a stay at home mother. They didn’t know how they would be able to do that as they depended on 2 incomes just to get by. They decided to pray about it. A prayer that has seen them through so many times.
“Dear God, Show me Your will, Give me direction, and please make it obvious!” They prayed that prayer and literally the next work day, Jacqueline noticed her co-worker looked really sad. Jacqueline asked if there was any way she could help. Her co-worker replied with her head in her hand, “Only if you have a place in your home for my client to sleep tonight for an emergency placement!” Jacqueline knew at that moment that was something she could offer. She called Jacob and he agreed. That was 12 years ago. What was going to be one overnight turned into a lasting, meant to be situation. It is considered adult foster care here in Vermont. The tax free stipend allowed Jacqueline to work from home by supporting a lovely woman with a developmental delay, while also being a stay at home mom.
When their first child was born they found out that he had a rare medical condition. They did everything they could to offer their child all the care he needed. It was a very challenging beginning. Their faith in God carried them through. Though they had a 50/50 chance of passing this gene on with another pregnancy, they loved parenting so much and truly felt called to have another baby. This time, a baby girl. Their children are now 8 and 10 years old and are best friends. Jacqueline homeschools the children and they have welcomed another woman with developmental delay into their home 6 years ago. Supporting and volunteering with Special Olympics is a big part of this families activities.
The support group they are involved with posted a child who needed to be adopted. Jacqueline showed Jacob, and the next morning Jacqueline called the listing adoption agency. They are now officially matched with Luke. Everything seems to be moving at lightning speed. Luke turns 13 this February. The family is working very hard every day to prepare for welcoming a new child to their family.
3/31/2021 — AWAITING LOA (9/2/20)
Phil and Maggie have been married for 10 years and have been blessed with 5 beautiful children, ages 9, 7, 6, 4, and 3. Phil is a writer and works from home. Maggie homeschools the children and the whole family gets to spend most of their time together, which is something they do not take for granted.
Maggie felt drawn toward adoption from a young age and, through experience with family members and through volunteering at a local organization that employs those with special needs, she developed a special love for those with Down syndrome. Phil has not always felt called to adoption, but Maggie asked him to pray about the possibility of adopting. Several years later, after finding out that his grandfather was adopted, Phil’s heart opened and he was on board. They both felt called to international adoption from the start and, through prayer and various circumstances, they discerned that God was leading them toward an Asian adoption.
There were three little boys that they felt drawn to during the referral process. Two of these boys had families hoping to adopt them once their home studies were approved, which gave Phil and Maggie peace about pursuing the third little boy. Something about his picture really grabbed their hearts and they were so excited that he might become a part of their family.
After a roller coaster of twists and turns and many months delay, they finally received pre-approval to adopt Chip. Their other children fell in love with him instantly and already consider him a part of the family. The 3-year-old loves to pray for “Chippy” and they can’t wait until they get to meet him face to face, as they feel like he has been in their hearts forever.
They feel so blessed to have been called to the beautiful journey of adoption. Financial hardships have been many throughout the process, but they are trusting that the Lord will provide for them as He always has. Thank you to anyone willing to assist in bringing their new son home! May God Bless you!
10/13/2020 — DOSSIER in COUNTRY
We are Carrie and Ken Woods, parents of six children, four adopted from Asia and two biological. We met in high school and have been married for almost 34 years. Our children range in ages from 8 to 31 and we are also excited to soon be grandparents. We started our first adoption in 2000 and over the years we have been fortunate to grow our family one at a time. Our last adoption in 2015 started with looking at several files and came down to two beautiful girls. It was a difficult decision but we are thankful that we brought our new daughter home when we did because she has needed significant medical care over the last 5 years. Fate would have it that the file for the other little girl came to our attention at the end of last year and we felt we were in a place to move forward and bring her home. She has always been in our hearts and now she will be in our lives and loving home.
12/1/2020 — DOSSIER SUBMITTED in OCT
Rodney and Alisha Keim live in Atkinson, Nebraska with their children Josiah, Selah, Jeremiah, and Tallulah. Jeremiah was adopted from Thailand in 2015 and Tallulah from Asia in 2019. The family was first matched with Tallulah through her advocacy page at Reece’s Rainbow. In one of the photos, she was pictured with another little boy who also captured their hearts. Had it been possible to adopt them together, that would have been their desire. The family met Eli while in country finalizing the adoption of Tallulah in May of 2019.
Their “happy family” picture was taken at the orphanage. Just after the picture was taken, the Keim family left the orphanage with Tallulah. Just before the photo was taken, Eli was taken back to join the other kids without families, bawling. The Keim family longs for the day they can see him again, the day his friend will become his sister. They pray he will come to understand how much he was loved that day and that he holds a piece of their broken hearts in his.
The last piece of paperwork the family will need in order to submit their dossier has been sitting on a desk in the USCIS office since March (just before immigration biometrics offices shut down due to the COVID-19 Pandemic). The family asks for your prayer: perhaps the God who moves mountains can push that little piece of paper on through soon. They also ask you to consider giving a donation to help them bring Eli home! Rodney and Alisha are each self-employed by small businesses that have been impacted by the Coronavirus shutdowns. God continues to provide graciously for their every need… perhaps you are one way he will provide for the adoption of Eli!
10/1/2020 — DOSSIER SUBMITTED 9/2
*** Elijah received a $5,000 Grant! ***
We are the Rinehart family and we are adopting! This will be our third and final adoption from Asia. We have six grown children and multiple grandchildren. Our home and family are full of people and love. Our two youngest daughters (ages 8 & 6), adopted in 2017 and 2018, are eagerly awaiting their little sister! We began our adoption journey in 2016 after the Lord laid in on our hearts over a several year period to adopt. The journey was like chipping away at stone to reveal the diamond underneath. The first time we saw her picture we were hooked! Little did we know then that we would repeat the process two more times. Like her sisters before her, our newest little one has stolen our hearts and we know that she is our daughter! We hope to bring her home this fall. With all of the uncertainty in the world, we would appreciate your prayer. Please pray for our family to get through this process quickly and that travel would be safe and available when it comes time to travel. If the Holy Spirit moves you to donate, we would certainly appreciate that as well. Thank you!
12/22/2020 — DOSSIER SUBMITTED
Brandon and Jessica have been happily married for 13 years and reside in a small West Texas with their four sweet children Beckett (11), Blaire (9), Brooklynn (8), and Beau (3). They have always believed that adoption would be a part of their family story. Their family is very excited to have a new sibling and pray/talk about them on a daily basis.
The cost and process of international adoption can be intimidating but they know this is where God is calling their family and will provide. If you feel called to support them in their adoption journey your prayers and donations would be greatly cherished! Thank you for your time, consideration, and prayers as they pursue their sweet child in China.
10/13/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL APPROVAL
Joe and Jenna live in NY with their 4 daughters Brianna, Chiara, Savanna and Stella. Stella, who was born with Down Syndrome, was adopted from Asia in 2018 and now they are excited to be going back for their 5th daughter, also born with Down Syndrome and a heart defect.
Joe and Jenna’s adoption story began in 2010 when adoption was first planted in their hearts after the loss of their unborn child and the news that they were not able to conceive any more children. In 2013, their 3rd daughter and miracle baby, Savanna, was born. She was truly a blessing that they were not expecting. But the seed of adoption had been planted years earlier, and it was growing.
Even after experiencing this profound miracle, the Neri’s knew that they had so much more love to share. Faith has been the hallmark of the Neri family from the very beginning and has carried them through the most difficult times. They, like many other families, had a heart for special needs adoption. Jenna has worked with adults and children with both physical and developmental disabilities for 22 years and knew the unique challenges individuals with Down Syndrome face. Then Jenna saw a picture of a beautiful little girl with Down Syndrome on Reece’s Rainbow and she knew this was her daughter. They worked hard to bring Stella home in October 2018 and now, less than 2 years later, they have fallen in love with another little girl that they know is meant to be their daughter as well.
Joe has just started his own small business and serves as the youth director at their church, and Jenna works as a Residential Manager for individuals with disabilities. They may not be a family of financial means, but they are rich in faith and love to share with another child. Despite the many uncertainties surrounding the pandemic and international adoption, they are committed to giving this beautiful girl the love, support and family she deserves.
1/4/2021 — DOSSIER SUBMITTED
Lindsay, Noel and their two kids plus a multitude of scaly, feathery and furry members call the Mile High state home. Together they do all things outdoors and enjoy traveling, especially to Texas, Kansas and Florida to visit extended family. Their biggest adventure yet will be traveling to Asia to bring their little girl HOME. They cannot wait to love, honor and celebrate her! The Applebaugh Garza family truly and fully embraces the unique love, beauty and challenges that come with raising a child with different abilities. Their experience and passion began with Lindsay’s brother and aunt who influenced her to become a Special Education teacher. These experiences have continued as Noel and Lindsay raise their son who is on the Autism spectrum and now with their soon-to-be daughter who was born with an extra chromosome. They are thrilled to welcome their new daughter and support her in becoming her best, most happy and healthy self! They would like to invite you on their adoption journey @lovebugchina on Instagram! Thank you for reading, your love and your support!
12/12/2020 — DOSSIER SUBMITTED
Meet the Carper family from central Pennsylvania. Jason and Candid met the 2nd day of their high school senior year in 2001 and have been together ever since. Jason and Candid were married after dating almost 4 years and Candid competed nursing school. They have 2 boys, Colton who is 11 and Jackson who is 6. They also have 2 labrador retrievers named Gracin and Hope and a cat named Callie. The Carper family enjoys camping with family and spending time together playing outside.
From a very young age, Candid could see people’s ability not their disability and has always been drawn to helping people. In 2007, she began researching adoption, but the timing was not right. She attended nursing school and worked in a long-term care facility for the first few years but felt called to pediatric nursing. She then went to work for an agency that provided care in children’s homes with special needs. After working 7 years for the agency she was blessed with their second son, however he would require a short-term NICU stay. She took time off to help him grow. When she returned to work, she started a new job as a school nurse at their local school district but always felt the call to return to special needs nursing. Candid returned to the pediatric home care and remains there taking care of children with multiple special needs. She has always felt the call from God to adopt but the timing was not right for their family due to caring for Jason’s grandmother for 7 years as well as 2 children.
Jason is the main family provider. He works very hard to be sure that his family is taken care of. Growing up with his grandparents and working on the family farm taught him many skills in life. Jason knows what unconditional love is and is looking forward to a new journey with a daughter.
Colton and Jackson both helped to care for their great-grandmother and showed great compassion in her care. They helped prepare her meals, attend medical appointments and hold her hand to guide her as she was blind. Both boys have been recognized in their school for helping others and having a loving heart. They are looking forward to a sister and being her protector.
In 2019, the call from God became greater and Candid began researching adoption again. She began praying for her family and for their future daughter. In July of 2019 she came across an advocacy post of a little girl with down syndrome. She then began having dreams of her and she just knew that she was who God had placed on her heart for her family to adopt. The Carper family began praying about adoption and in October they submitted their application to bring home a precious little girl.
They are now home study approved and have sent in their LOI and I-800A forms. Please pray for their family and little girl as they are excited to bring her home and become a family of 5.
1/5/2021 — DOSSIER SUBMITTED
Leah is a lifelong Navy sailor who grew up as a dependent and is now active duty. When she was a young girl living in Hawaii, her stay-at-home RN mother fostered several children under 2 who had special needs for a few months and one at a time while they were between more permanent homes. Even though she was only 5 years old at the time, she fell in love with a baby named Emily whose smile she can still remember and was old enough to understand that adopting meant adding a child who didn’t come out of her mommy’s tummy. Since then, adoption has been at the forefront of her mind when it comes to adding kids to a family of her own.
In 2015 while stationed on a ship, her church hosted an adoption agency that talked about older child adoption. They told her that even single women who work full time on a Navy ship can adopt. Leah knew that her time was coming when she would add to her family of one.
In January of 2019, a friend shared the Reece’s Rainbow page of a girl who was aging out and Leah felt the tug on her heart. She began prayerfully considering adoption in the near future and knew it was almost time. Almost one exact year later, another girl with the same special needs was shared to Facebook by a friend who had already completed an adoption for a child on Reece’s Rainbow and was working on her second. Leah knew it was time and began her home study that month.
First time international adoption can be a long and difficult process and the child that Leah is working toward adopting doesn’t have much time! Any kind of help is welcomed and appreciated and thanks to all who follow this journey to make the Davis family go from one to two!
3/11/2021 — DOSSIER LOGGED IN on 3/8
Meet the Houston family made up of Wesley, Rachael and their dog Kyba! Wes and Rach met at an elementary school play of Frog and Toad, it was true love at first sight! They share a passion for music, art, exploration, the outdoors, and family. Rachael, a teacher for 10 years and now administrator, has a passion for children and a great deal of experience with children with physical, mental, and emotional special needs. Wesley is the laid back and go with the flow kind of guy. He works as an insurance adjuster by day and a recreational ultimate frisbee player by night. They are an energetic couple who loves to tackle challenges as a team!
Not too long after getting married Wesley and Rachael found out they would not be able to have biological children of their own. This was when Rachael shared that as a young teenager she felt the impression that she was going to adopt one day. At the time it seemed strange because that was not the phase of life she was even really thinking about. Although the experience was long in the past it had always stayed with her. After many hours of researching, and researching, and researching some more they made the decision to move forward with international adoption. They both love children and are egger to become parents and share their love with a child!
Darcy Joy completely stole their hearts as soon as they saw her bio! The more they learned about her the more they fell in love. Their soon to be daughter was diagnosed with postoperative lumbar spinal meningocele, also known as Spina Bifida. She is unable to walk but that doesn’t slow her down one bit. She is a favorite in the orphanage as stated by her nannies and she is a big time favorite by her soon to be family. The Houston’s feel extremely blessed to be on this journey to building their forever family!
4/13/2021 — DOSSIER LOGGED IN on 3/8
The Marshall Family is adopting again! 2.5 years ago the Marshall’s welcomed Ping (Pepper on RR) and Liam into their family and went from a family of 4 to a family of 6. One year after bringing Ping and Liam home, Laura saw an advocacy post for a little boy. He was so tiny and had the most piercing eyes she had ever seen. His file indicated many medical issues and he had Down Syndrome just like Ping and Liam. The Marshall’s fell in love with him and rushed to get him home. Due to his needs he was medically expedited and came home January 25, 2019. It has been a busy year for the Marshall family and a year of great growth; physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
The Marshall Family now consists of Billy and Laura who have been married for almost 14 years, Tessa Grace 16 years old, Bella Charity 12 years old, Ping Joy 10 years old, Liam Worth 6 years old, and Asa Courage 4 years old. Recently, Laura and Billy felt the familiar tug towards adoption and discovered one of the little girls they have loved for a while is still waiting. They made some inquiries and decided she will be the next Marshall, Ember Faith “Emmy”. The Marshall’s are hoping to bring her home by the end of 2020 which will be 4 adoptions in 3.5 years! They are stepping out in faith that God will provide funding to help bring their daughter home where she will receive medical attention, nutrition, and LOVE! Thank you for joining the Marshall’s on their journey and supporting them with your prayers and donations.
4/6/2021 — DOSSIER COMPLETE
Hi everyone, we are Candy and Adam Travis from Alabama.
Adam and I met through a mutual friend, and we are now about to be celebrating our 30th wedding anniversary!! We have four biological adult children, and a precious three year old little girl that we are in the final stages of adopting domestically.
We feel so blessed and honored to be called to adoption. God started speaking to our hearts about foster care and adoption in 2017 and that ultimately led us to bringing home our little angel from the NICU in May of 2018. But God wasn’t finished yet! He started speaking to us again, and led us to the most precious little boy with the sweetest smile, who also happens to be rockin’ that extra chromosome! We submitted Letter of Intent for “Benson” on 3/31/21 and received PA on 7/16/21. All I can say is God is So Good, and we CANNOT WAIT to bring our little boy home!!!!
7/22/2021 — DOSSIER COMPLETE; OFFICIALLY MATCHED
Greetings from the Wood Family! We are Brian, Kristen, Graysen, Emma Rae, and Blake and coming soon, a new daughter to be named Katie! We have been married for 10 wonderful years, and we have 3 amazing children. Brian is a student pastor at Point Harbor Church and Kristen is a Registered Nurse working in an elementary school.
Shortly after being married, we started talking about adoption and really felt a tug in our hearts early on specifically for China. About 4 years into our marriage, some friends of ours adopted their sweet girl from China and that started a ripple effect and we soon were surrounded with so many friends who said “YES” to their children in China. This only fueled our hearts more for China.
After we moved to VA, we were introduced to another family who has adopted 3 babies with Down Syndrome from China. Down Syndrome had never been on our radar, however, we fell absolutely in love with these amazing children. Although we always had a peace about China, God began to break our hearts specifically for children with Down Syndrome.
We were “introduced” to our daughter on Reece’s Rainbow site. Katie has Down Syndrome, CHD, and repaired VSD and PFO. She is an absolute doll and we cannot wait to have her in our arms. Katie will be 2 years old in July and we want to have her home as soon as we can. She has 3 siblings who are over the moon for her already and are so ready to have their sister home.
Please help our family to bring our daughter home! We plan to travel with our two oldest children, who are 11 and 9 yrs old. We greatly appreciate all prayers and financial support as we continue our adoption journey to complete our family!
10/13/2021 — TA RECEIVED in JANUARY 2020; AWAITING TRAVEL
We are Jaime and Gary and we hope that our story can help you understand why we have chosen the wonderful yet difficult path of adoption. We are the parents to three internationally adopted children from China, Shawn 8, Ryan 5, and Robin 3. We are often asked why we chose to adopt internationally rather than have our own biological children. We answer them how Vernon Pierce, a pastor and foster parent, does. He describes the mirrors between adoption and Gods love. He says “I like to tell people that we were the people in the back of the filing cabinet with the red stamp saying: Do not adopt. You look at the file on humanity and it says: Prone to rejection, prone to running away, prone to disobedience. There is no reason why God should have loved us and yet God did love us. He set his love upon us and it was a redemptive love to reconcile us to himself, to restore us to himself and restoring a people to himself. We were meant to be part of the family of God. We fell away and God still brings us back to himself”. When we adopt, we willing to choose the “red stamps” of life; those who are hurt, both physically and emotionally. We as parents set our love upon them and watch as Gods redemptive and restorative power work through us to directly change our children. It’s a truly powerful and miraculous thing to watch. It is also why we believe that the most profound thing we can impart to our children is the love of Christ. While we set our love upon our children we also disciple them with this message, that it is only Jesus who can save and change a heart from the inside.
In 2012 we started our journey with the adoption of a 2-year-old boy, Shawn, born with a cleft lip/palate. We followed his adoption up with two others in 2016 and 2017. Ryan was adopted at 3 and was diagnosed with Lamb-Shaffer Syndrome, a rare genetic deletion causing intellectual disabilities, speech impairments, and ataxic muscle movements. Little Robin arrived home at the age of one. She was diagnosed with cleft lip/palate, a heart defect, and hearing loss. As with all institutionalized children, their early childhood trauma and fear manifests in various ways. We meet them where they are, set our love upon them and trust God to redeem and restore the broken, just as Christ does for us.
Each one of our children has their own individual stories. Yet, they all share a similar heritage and can relate to each other through their medical needs. While they recognize the others struggles or disabilities they don’t capitalize on them but overlook them; the abled helping the disabled, the better signer helping the non-verbal to communicate more effectively, playing as a sibling unit despite ability.
We are seeking to adopt Caleb, a 7-year-old with arthrogryposis. We had the privilege of speaking with Caleb’s American foster family and gaining insight into his personality. His foster parents describe Caleb as a peacemaker with a sweet personality. He tries to find ways to accomplish tasks on his own despite his physical disability. Caleb also lives with foster siblings that have a variety of needs, ranging from Trisomy 21, Cerebral Palsy, Autism, and Clefts. His foster parents feel that Caleb would thrive as a middle brother who could not only look up to his older brother but also be a helper to his younger siblings. Caleb is receiving excellent care at his healing home but cannot reach his full potential there. He has already had seven surgeries and will require several more to achieve greater range of motion in his extremities. We have a translated letter written by Caleb expressing his desire to be adopted. You can also hear the sadness in his voice as he feels overlooked while he watches all of his friends be adopted.
We are humbled that you have taken the time to read our profile and thank you as you consider donating to help us bring Caleb home!
10/13/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL APPROVAL SINCE 2020
Hi! We’re Kristy and Dale, and we’re the Galaleo family!
Dale and I first met in 2008 at the gym in where Dale was a spinning instructor and I was an admiring student. By day, I managed an aquarium and Dale built cool unmanned deep ocean gliders. We didn’t start dating until one Friday the 13th in 2012 and were fittingly married on Friday the 13th in May, 2016 at a beautiful waterfall in Connecticut. Two of our dogs, Trooper and Kopper served as our best men.
The end of 2016 and most of 2017 were rough for us as we lost some of our beloved animals and Dale’s adopted sister passed away unexpectedly. But 2017 also brought us a silver lining — one that redefined our definition of family and may change our lives forever. After his sister’s passing, Dale’s adopted brother came to live with us. We spent much of 2017 reconnecting with Dana, who was diagnosed with schizophrenic tendencies and other behaviors that would now fall on the spectrum for Autism as well as very poorly managed diabetes, and helping him get situated in an adult rehabilitation program that brought new purpose to his life.
Because he was such a great benefit to the program, they offered him housing in one of their newly built quadraplexes. Watching Dale’s brother grow and finally achieve a fulfilling life at 59 helped us realize that we might be able to help someone else.
As you can see in our photo, we have adopted several “handi-capable” dogs over the years. We’ve poured our love into them, but I’ve always felt like something else was missing. I have previously served as a respite provider for foster parents, and I know the need for caring parents and safe homes.
Dale and I have often thought about adoption, influenced by Dale’s experience as a younger brother to two adopted siblings and my experience fostering. However, I found myself in a job that required too many hours to bring a child home for good. If we were going to adopt, we knew we would both need to make some life changes.
I left the field of marine biology for interior design more than a year ago. Now, I’m able to leave work on time and don’t bring work home with me. We’ve moved to Florida and settled into a less hectic routine. There’s no time like now for us to grow our family, but we need help.
In October, Dale and I committed to adopting a beautiful 5-year-old girl from Asia. One night I was Googling “adopting children with special needs” and came across Reece’s Rainbow. I clicked on their waiting children link and started clicking through the various ages of children with Down syndrome. I remember being saddened by how many children there were and how long some of them have been waiting for a family of their own. As I scrolled through the “girls 3-5” I came across an adorable full face with the most genuine smile. Her name on the site is “Della” (we won’t know her real name until our home study is completed). I watched the videos that were posted and in all her videos she just seems to smile. Now her smile melts our hearts every time we watch the videos. We realize adopting a special needs child may require more work on our part, but there is no denying that our hearts are ready for this journey.
We have been working diligently on all the paperwork. Our home study is near completion, and we’re already researching all the best options to support for our daughter to ensure she blossoms in our care. We appreciate that you’ve read our family’s story and thank you in advance for anything you can give to bring us a step closer to uniting us with our new daughter.
5/20/2021 — DOSSIER SUBMITTED
Ross and Rachel were first introduced to international adoption, China specific, through Steven Curtis Chapman and his families’ journey of adoption. Ross and Rachel are both musicians and have always been inspired by Chapman and his music. What led them to their first consideration of international adoption was their struggle with infertility. At that time, they did not meet the adoption criteria so they continued to pray for the blessing of children. He answered, God blessed them with 2 wonderful children. Even as they had their first and second pregnancy, adoption was always something they desired to do.
Their son has Aspergers and Sensory Processing Disorder. They have had witnessed both trials and miracles through his disability. The valleys were tough, real tough…but the mountain views have been worth every moment of trial and hard work. Their son is now proactive and diligent in his academics making straight A’s, he is a respectful young man and has the kind of creativity one would only dream of having. Their daughter has the most beautiful pure heart of anyone they have ever known and has always friended the outcast due to her extreme passion for children with special needs. She has developed a new friendship with the little boy with trisomy 1 that Rachel babysat for 10 years through her high school/college years. With Ross and Rachel’s personal therapy experiences and with the heart of these two siblings, they thought it only appropriate to adopt a child with special needs. They are adopting Reeces Rainbow “Maura” who is 3 years old.
This family cannot wait to get their wildflower home! Due to all of her standing medical conditions, they are trying to set aside personal financial resources for post-adoption medical care while also fundraising and funding the adoption. They are looking forward to the day they hold her in their arms which is not too much longer away!
10/13/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL APPROVAL SINCE 2020
The Anglen family has met their $5000 matching grant from RODS Racing!
Tim (James) and Jennifer Hayden have been married for almost 5 years. Tim has 2 adult children from a previous marriage, and Jennifer has 4 children ranging in age from 14 to 20 years old. Jennifer is an RN who has worked with children with special needs since high school, and Tim has a natural gift with people that have extra challenges. One of Jennifer’s daughters was adopted from Uzbekistan 10 years ago and has taught this family a great deal about the world of special needs parenting. In fact, it was during her involvement in the Special Olympics that Tim and Jennifer fell in love with children and adults with Down Syndrome.
With all their children growing up, Tim and Jennifer felt that God was telling their hearts that they weren’t quite done with parenting. Out of a wish to give a child a family that needs one and also the desire to have the experience of raising a child together, they believe adoption is the best way to accomplish this. With Jennifer’s past experience with international adoption, and many friends in their church family coming from Asian heritage, adopting from China seemed a natural fit. After years of following Reece’s Rainbow’s ministry, they fell in love with LOUIS several months ago and prayed for him to be their son if it was God’s will. After many months of preparation, they have now been pre-approved for his adoption!
3/16/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL DATES
Louis has received a Waiting Child Grant of $15,100.00.
We are Galen & Yalonda Horst. We have been married 21 blessed years and God has touched our hearts and lives with 7 children; 4 biological children and 3 through the miracle of adoption. Our first 2 adoptions were from Guatemala and the last one was from China.
Adoption has touched our hearts and lives in a way that has changed us tremendously. We never dreamed, when we did our first 2 adoptions from Guatemala, that God would lead us to adopt a child from China who has Down Syndrome, but it has been another beautiful experience!
The transformation that Kyla has made in the past 2 years is nothing short of amazing! It was beautiful to see her personality unfold and come alive after coming to us as an unresponsive, shutdown, infant-like 2 year old. Now 2 years later she is hardly recognizable as the same child! She is so full of love, mischief, and humor!
So when another sweet little girl with Down Syndrome jumped off an advocacy page at us, we prayed fervently for an answer as to whether or not this was truly God calling us again. After much prayer, we felt God was telling us to step forward. So… we’re on our way to Asia again!
Our prayer for Kristi: “I pray that God would hold you in His arms until I can hold you in mine own!”
10/13/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL APPROVAL SINCE 2020
Kathy will be adding another aging out child to her family! She returned home in May of 2018 with an almost 16-year-old with Down syndrome from Armenia. She is now working to bring home another daughter with DS from East Asia. This precious one has been on the hearts and minds of a lot of people who love her and have prayed for her. She was hosted in the US in the summer of 2016 by a family who hoped to adopt her but were unfortunately denied due to rules changing in the country. Kathy is grateful for the knowledge, experience, and love the family provided to her while she was here, and continue to provide.
Kathy’s first hands-on experience with international adoption was when her daughter and granddaughter, also with DS, returned home in December 2015 from Armenia. Her daughter is also in the process of adding another little one with DS to the family! While following her daughter’s first adoption and the years since, Kathy has helped as many families as she could, financially and prayerfully. She has also advocated for many children in need of families. Reading story after story about the life altering effects of adoption – for the child and parents – has been an inspiration to her.
After reading about the conditions children who have aged out face, and knowing those children would never know the love of a family, she knew she needed to do more. For the last few months Kathy has been contemplating and praying on what more she could do to help these children. So she is excited to announce that she is once again crossing the ocean to adopt again before this girl ages out and loses the chance to live happily ever after knowing the love and joy of having a family!
Any prayers and support, financially or emotionally, are greatly appreciated during her adoption process!
10/13/2021 — LOA RECEIVED in MAY 2020; AWAITING TRAVEL
Jonathan and Leanne have known each other for as long as they can remember and have loved each other for over half of their lives. They were high school sweethearts which mostly consisted of passing notes to each other at church. They impatiently waited until Leanne was in college before they were allowed to officially date/court each other. After several challenging yet wonderful years, Jonathan and Leanne were able to get married while Jonathan was in college at Texas A&M and Leanne was teaching at a local elementary school.
The summer after Jonathan’s graduation and commissioning into the US Air Force, Leanne gave birth to their oldest daughter, Emily. Soon after her birth, they moved to Germany, and Jonathan started work as a second lieutenant. After almost ten years married and seven years in the military, Jonathan and Leanne have three biological children: Emily (age 7), Michael (age 5), and Ellen (age 3). Through adoption, they hope to add to their family very soon!
They are an active military family who have been blessed with adventures all over the world including (but not limited to) Texas, Germany, Alaska, and New Mexico. In 2013, they began their adoption journey with several attempts (international and through the foster system). Each ended with God closing the door. During this time, God opened their hearts to becoming foster parents. They have been licensed foster parents in both Alaska and New Mexico. Right after they became licensed in New Mexico in June 2019, they found out that they qualified to adopt Daniel (an eight year old boy from China with Down syndrome) who they had already tried to adopt the previous year. After several heartbreaking months of thinking it would be impossible to adopt Daniel, God miraculously re-opened this door! They are so excited to finally be moving forward with this adoption! With only months to go, they don’t want finances to be what delays them from going to adopt him and bring him home. God has provided exactly what they need so far, and they are thankful that you are considering being part of Daniel’s amazing adoption story!
10/13/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL APPROVAL SINCE 2020
Nathan and Stephanie Faught have been married for eleven years and have five wonderful children- three biological and two born in their hearts. During their engagement, the Lord started drawing them to hurting children through a ministry that serves families in the inner city. With big hearts and an open door policy, Nate and Stephanie quickly began filling their home with children to love, both biological and through the inner city ministry. Within the first five years of their marriage, they were parents to three babies/toddlers, and a teen. Although it seemed crazy to many, the Lord was all in it! He was clearly leading them down a path unlike what they had planned. As Proverbs 16:9 reminds us…”The mind of man plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps.” From early on, they just wanted their steps ordered by Him.
In year 8 of their marriage, the Father brought them a handsome brave seven year old boy! What a gift this boy was to them. Amazingly, he is now their son. Many asked how they were able to take on so much, and their response always pointed others toward God. They continuously re-mind others that this journey of adding children to their family is His call on their lives. Adoption has come with it’s challenges; yet through the hard times, the Lord has always been faithful.
Fast forward to the following year… at a time when Nate and Stephanie just knew they couldn’t handle anymore changes in their lives… the Father placed a precious three year old girl into their laps. She came to them “just for respite”… two to four weeks max. God sure has a sense of humor because that little sweetness is now their daughter. AND… the most incredible part is that she has Down Syndrome. A special need the Faughts had never considered. In fact, they were quite intimidated by raising a special needs child…. BUT GOD… when they saw her picture… they did not see a child with Down Syndrome. They saw HER! She was a precious soul in need of love. They quickly learned that she was no different than the other children the Lord had brought them!
Adding her to their family has changed all of them in such a beautiful way! It’s one thing to read about the millions of orphans living in institutions and feel sad for them. But when someone be-comes mommy, daddy, or brother to one of those children, a true passion is developed. They’ve experienced first hand how being orphaned truly affects a child, and they all long to see each of these children find a forever family! The Faughts have also been shown the true value of these precious ones with special needs-specifically those with down syndrome. The Father showed them that while many have labeled these children a burden, they are truly one of His greatest treasures…fearfully and wonderfully made by Him.
This summer, a dear friend of theirs had an amazing opportunity to visit an orphanage in Asia to check on a handful of waiting children. The day she visited them, the whole Faught family was praying that each child would feel the Father’s love through her and that they would finally be found by their forever families. When the friend returned home, she posted pictures of the children she had met. Stephanie and her children sat at the table looking at their precious faces. When they came to a picture of a little girl with down syndrome dressed in yellow, their oldest son proclaimed, “Mom, that is our sister! Can we adopt her?” The other children quickly chimed in, “yes, mom, please!!!” Stephanie simply replied that they would just have to pray about it. When Nate returned home from work, he was met at the door with a picture of this sweet girl and begging little boys. He echoed Stephanie’s response that they just needed to pray. The brothers united together telling him that they pray for orphans all the time and they just knew this one was their sister. That week, they watched as their children prayed with such fervor. Nathan and Stephanie prayed too and the Lord confirmed that she was indeed their child! When Stephanie reached out to her friend to get some more information, her friend told her that the little girls advocacy name was “Stephanie”. She laughed out loud and thought to herself, “well, of course it is”.
The whole family is so excited to bring Stephanie home, hopefully early next year. They would love to see others join them on this journey, and they thank you in advance for all of your prayers and support!
Follow their journey on Instagram @bringinghomeveraellen or Facebook @ Bringing Home Vera Ellen.
10/13/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL APPROVAL SINCE 2020
Hi, we are the Cochran family, Mike, Grace, Natalie (5), and Jason (3). We are a military family stationed on the beautiful island of Okinawa. Mike is an EOD tech (explosive ordinance disposal) in the US Marine Corps. He has served 10 years and plans to retire. Grace is a stay at home homeschooling mama. We have been married for 9 years. We have had a heart for adoption for a very long time but it wasn’t until this year that we felt God telling us that it was our time. We took a leap of faith with a whole lot of nothing in our pocket back in June of this year. We watched God use what little we had and multiply it. Within a months’ time we had enough to fund our first payment and homestudy for our China adoption. In July Mike came home from deployment and we got to work. Within a month’s time we managed to compile our dossier and complete our homestudy (yes it is doable!) During that time frame I came across an advocacy post for this precious little girl with Down Syndrome. We knew she was the one! She will be 2 years old this October and shares the same birthday as her soon to be daddy. We hope to travel early next year. This journey has not been easy and we still have so far to go but every day is one step closer to her. We know that God has such amazing plans for her life, so much bigger and more beautiful than we can imagine. Thank you for the honor of sharing our story with you. Most importantly thank you for the prayers and support.
10/13/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL APPROVAL SINCE 2020
Dan and Tara Brooke are parents of four beautiful children. The oldest three were born biologically to the Brooke family, while their fourth, was born in their hearts. In 2016 the Brooke family was gifted with their youngest child, George, through adoption. Dan and Tara had felt a call to adopt, but didn’t know exactly what that meant until 2014 when they felt the call to adopt a child with Down Syndrome. George was an instant match to the Brooke family and has been such a tremendous gift to their lives. He has gifted them with more joy and love than they ever imagined. In late 2018 the Brooke’s felt a call again. They were unsure how they were going to make adoption work financially in their lives again, but knew that they were supposed to adopt once again. Early in 2019 they began that process. They have been matched to Zack Qi and are in the midst of dossier and immigration paperwork. They hope to travel late 2019 or early 2020 to bring Zack home to their family and make him a Brooke too! Zack is already a member of their family, the love is already there, they cannot wait to hold him, love him, and care for him.
10/13/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL APPROVAL since SEPTEMBER 2020
Roderick and Melissa have been happily married for eight years and reside in a small town in Illinois with their five wonderful children Adeson (12), Emery (11), Jacob (9), Ella Grace (7) and Casey(5). Four of their five children were adopted internationally, two from China and two from Ethiopia. Rod and Melissa have been committed to adoption, and both they and their extended families have been foster parents, adoptive parents, and advocates for humanitarian and children’s rights. They are also parents to Melissa’s seven children from her first marriage of 17 years Brandon (34), Ryan (deceased), Alex (25), Matthew (23), Sara (20), Emily (17) and Antonio (17), Alex, and Antonio were also adopted, one at age eight and one at age four from Russia and Guatemala. They believe their family is their calling and feel blessed to have had the blessing of family and friends throughout their life journey.
The cost and process of international adoption, while intimidating they believe is far worth the journey. Rod and Melissa believe that completing their family through adoption is the right thing for them and are very excited about bringing home their new son who they found through Reece’s Rainbow, whom they will call Noah. If you can help them support their adoption journey, their family would be grateful.
You can also follow their journey at https://www.facebook.com/rockwellhopkinsfamily/
10/13/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL DATES
The Rockwell-Hopkins family met their $5000 matching grant from RODS Racing!
We (Brion and Jenn) have been part of the adoption community for most of our lives. Brion’s family, including his father, aunts, and uncles, as well as niece and nephew were adopted. Before Jenn met Brion, she spent many years working with organizations that supported orphans and community health in Vietnam, China, Mexico, and Honduras. Adoption has always been a plan for our families for both Brion and Jenn, even before they met. We believe family is the greatest gift a person can give to another. We have put our family first in all we have done in life and we have been blessed in return with the most amazing children. We cannot imagine life any other way (even if it meant it was easier). We adopted three of our five children. Adoption has been an amazing experience for our entire family. Our last two children, Michael and Emily were adopted together from China two years ago. Their journey home has brought us closer than ever as a family. Throughout this journey, we connected with many families and orphaned children. The connections and the experiences we have had with adoption have motivated us to pursue adoption again. We believe all children belong in families. And we have decided to pursue adoption as the way to further expand our family. Down Syndrome adoption (which is what we are pursuing now) was a dream of ours since before we were married. Our adoption of Emily in 2018 and the connections we have made in the Down Syndrome community has inspired us to adopt our sixth child, who will also have Down Syndrome- or what we like to refer to as “FLAWLESS”.
Our formal adoption journey formally began in 2006 when we pursued the adoption of Olivia from Vietnam. Our journey to her was incredibly challenging, as Vietnam closed the adoption program in 2008. We were still able to bring Olivia home. When we discovered her traumatic brain injury, we felt peace knowing she was with her forever family. In 2017, we decided to grow our family again. We were well prepared with the requirements of raising children with exceptional needs and had the resources to provide for another child. Our initial plan was to adopt one child from China (Emily). After much prayer and consideration, we decided to adopt a second child with her (Michael). We brought both children home in March of 2018. In August of that year we learned Michael had Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. This diagnosis came as a shock to us, as we had no idea of this disease, and were devastated to learn the tragic path and terminal outcome. Through our grief and processing, we found ourselves in a place of peace and joy knowing that Michael would have a family who would love him forever and would care for him when his disease takes his mobility and eventually his life. Most people would probably find it sensible to stop growing their family at this point. After all, we have two children with diagnoses that we never imagined. But the truth is, Michael and Olivia affirmed our belief that a family supports, sustains, and loves no matter if… not matter what.
In 2019, we decided to continue our parenting journey with our present adoption. Our experiences with Down Syndrome adoption, the community, and our family structure has opened our family to adopt another child with Down Syndrome. We
have been matched with an almost 4-year-old girl with Down Syndrome. She also has a severe heart condition (due to congenital heart defects). When we saw her face on Reece’s Rainbow and heard the most precious giggle ever….we knew we found our daughter.
10/13/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL APPROVAL SINCE 2020
I am happy to introduce you to the Umstead family. They are a family of 11! Tom and Heather have 4 biological children who are all adults. Tom, along with his brother-in-law, father-in-law and son, own their own business where they cut trees and sell the timber. Heather stays at home with the kids and grandkids and cares for the home duties.
The Umsteads had their children young and were just reaching the time in life where things were starting to slow down, and they were looking forward to more time with each other and possibly some traveling. About that time, they began to feel a nudge from God to be completely surrendered to Him. They wanted to give their lives back to God so He could use them as a blessing to others. That is when adoption was placed on their hearts. Not just adoption but they researched and found the greatest need was children with Down syndrome. Asia in particular had a great number of boys with Down syndrome in orphanages.
Enter their 4th son, Samuel! Samuel was adopted in 2017; he was 3 when the Umstead’s brought him home. He has Down syndrome and an extra surprise of Autism. Samuel fit into their family like only God could do. Autism was not a disability they thought they were open to, but they would not change a thing about Samuel. They were over the moon about Samuel and did not plan on a return trip to Asia. However, during the visit to the orphanage, Tom met Joy (formerly Caroline on RR). Joy shared a crib with Samuel, and they lived in that small space together for 3 years. So as soon as they returned to the US they began advocating for Joy. When their year was up, and no one submitted for Joy they knew they had to go back for her. Joy came home in 2019. Joy rocked the extra chromosome along with a heart defect that eventually will need another surgery, but you would never know! Joy is amazing! She is such a quick learner and is thriving in her new family.
Prior to adopting Joy, the Umstead’s learned of a little guy in the same orphanage as their children. His name is Auden, and they were drawn to him. During the visit at the orphanage when adopting Joy, they asked to see and spend time with Auden. They were able to see him but were not given permission to interact with him. Auden was not doing well. They committed at that moment to return for him as soon as possible. They spoke with friends and were able to get Auden out of the orphanage and into a healing home until they would be permitted to return for him.
That takes us to today. The Umstead’s have submitted their dossier and they are just waiting for the travel suspension to be lifted so they can make their final trip to bring home their last son, who will be named Moses John. Along with your financial support (because fundraising is hard with Samuel and Joy) they would appreciate your prayers.
3/16/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL